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Reviewed by
Last updated: May 13, 2022

Syma X5C Review – An Ideal Drone for New Pilots? (Summer 2022)

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By
Reviewed by
Reviewed by
Last updated: May 13, 2022
Extreme Fliers is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here
Ideal for:
  • Beginners who easy controls to aid learning
  • People who are looking for a drone that can handle the odd bump
  • Those who want great value for money
Main features:
  • 90-100 minute recharge time, which is low at this price point
  • 50-meter range with 7-minute flight time
  • Light and simple controls
Editor's Rating
9
out of 10
  • Design and Build 9.1
  • Flight Time 9.0
  • Video Quality 9.0
  • Picture Quality 9.0
Users’ Rating
4.3
out of 5
  • 162 Users’ Ratings rating rating rating rating rating
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    4.3
    out of
    5
    162 Users’ Ratings
    • 5 stars
      38%
    • 4 stars
      56%
    • 3 stars
      5%
    • 2 stars
      1%
    • 1 stars
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Extreme Fliers is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here

Drones have become an increasingly popular pastime. Whether you want to create some impressive video, take images or simply get to grips with piloting, you’re likely to be looking for a drone model that offers great value for money and the Syma X5C can certainly offer this.

In our Syma X5C review, we’ll delve into this model in more detail, so you can appreciate the functionality and practicality of owning this drone before you make your final purchase decision.

Specifications

Control Type
Remote control
Flying Time
7 min
Max. Range
150 ft (50 m)
Weight
1.15 lbs.
Dimensions
10 in. x 10 in. x 3 in.
Camera
2MP 1024 x 768
Battery
3.7V 500mAh Lipo
Charging Time
100 min
Frequency
2.4 GHz

Review

With five million Trusted Source • Global consumer drone shipments 2020-2030 | Statista The total number of consumer drone shipments worldwide was around 5 million units in 2020. The number is expected to increase over the next decade, reaching 9.6 million consumer drone unit shipments globally by 2030. www.statista.com drones sold globally in 2020, it is obvious that this sector is fast moving. Syma is a leading brand in the industry and the Syma X5C is an example of how this manufacturer is keeping up with the latest industry developments.

Design and Functionality

Syma X5C Review - An Ideal Drone for New Pilots? (Summer 2022)

Syma X5C features a 6-axis gyroscope and a set of LED lights for flying in low-light conditions

Let’s start this Syma X5C Quadcopter review with an overview of the design and functionality. This drone has a 6-axis gyroscope that’s an ideal feature for new pilots because you don’t need extensive skills to get the drive flying. Of course, once the pilot has gained some skill they may appreciate the experience on a deeper level. The drone is easy to hover in-place, but there is no built-in GPS system and this makes hovering tricky for a less experienced pilot.

This drone has a set of LED lights at each propeller which is helpful when flying at night or in low-light conditions. Power is supplied via a 3.7v 500mAh lithium polymer battery which is located in a socket next to the underslung camera. This drone will fly better in minimal wind conditions and above a strong breeze it will drift and control is harder. If you remove the propeller guards and camera unit, the flying performance is improved. The drone tends to feel more stable in this configuration and the lower weight boosts the flight time by a few minutes.

Build Quality

This Syma X5C drone review would not be complete without an evaluation of the build quality. After all, even a less expensive drone represents a certain level of investment and we want to get the most for our money. The X5C is a good trainer drone when the camera and propeller guards are removed and it has a great deal of survivability. Having a set of replacement motors and propellers on hand will keep you flying after most crashes. The main body of this drone is not particularly durable, but it can survive a dead battery drop from 100 feet or a tree strike. This is because of the flex in the frame and the aerodynamic properties.

Like many other non self-hovering drones, the Syma X5C has the capability to move the speed of the propellers down to zero. Some drones have throttle controls but they don’t spin the propellers to a stop when the drone is still airborne. The X5C can use auto rotation to slow the fall of the drone when power is lost.
Going from a hover to acceleration can cause the drone to fall at lower RPMs because the propellers are still attempting to move upwards. Throttling down can cut power entirely and the propellers start to spin backward.

When the drone drops this situation is exacerbated because the natural air resistance will spin the rotors faster. This can damage the motors, they will burn out if power is applied and at this point, the propellers are acting as air brakes. When an X5C falls in this way, it often occurs in a very slow and controlled manner which can be a real surprise when you see it for the first time. There may be a slight bounce on impact but this is unlikely to cause damage on grass or other softer surfaces.

Battery and Flight Time

The Syma X5C transmitter requires 4xAA batteries and the effective range is 50-60 meters. All seasoned pilots will carry a few spare batteries for their drone and transmitter if they want to keep flying for an extended period of time. The 3.7v 500mAh lithium polymer battery provides up to 7 minutes of flight. This can be extended to around 10 minutes if the camera, landing gear, and propeller guards are removed. This battery takes around 90 minutes to recharge fully, but it’s an inexpensive unit and these batteries are readily available.

Flight Modes

This drone does have a good camera. It’s not an HD model, but at this relatively low price, it’s better than you might expect. In terms of aerial footage times, you’re looking at a flight time of 7 minutes with the camera onboard but spare batteries can be a handy workaround. The aerial footage made with this drone is impressive when you consider that Syma is better known for toy drones. The access to these features that are typically found on more advanced drones has made the X5C competitive.

Camera

Syma X5C Review - An Ideal Drone for New Pilots? (Summer 2022)

The Syma X5C doesn’t have an HD camera, but it’s still  worth the price

This drone does have a good camera. It’s not an HD model, but at this relatively low price, it’s better than you might expect. In terms of aerial footage times, you’re looking at a flight time of 7 minutes with the camera onboard but spare batteries can be a handy workaround. The aerial footage made with this drone is impressive when you consider that Syma is better known for toy drones. The access to these features that are typically found on more advanced drones has made the X5C competitive.

Controller and App

This Syma X5C explorers drone has a pretty standard control layout for flying. The left stick handles the throttle and hovering and rotation or yaw and the right stick controls forward, backward, and side motion or pitch and roll. Syma refers to the class layout as “Mode 1” and these controls can be flipped to the opposite as “Mode 2” if you prefer.

New pilots won’t have much difficulty taking off and maneuvering after a little practice and the controls are responsive. The only real drawback is the lack of a dedicated hover mode but good left stick control can simulate this behavior. The X5C controls are light and simple, but there are a few drawbacks that pilots need to consider. If the drone moves out of range it will not return automatically and you will have to go and retrieve it. This is a light drone, the wind can move it easily and this is especially noticeable at higher altitudes. Another disadvantage is a lack of any object avoidance or safe landing system which places more emphasis on the skills of the pilot.

The Syma X5C has a “3D Eversion” system which allows the pilot to flip the drone in different directions.
This is achieved by flipping a dedicated switch on the transmitter unit and then pressing the right control stick in the desired direction. The 6-axis gyroscope allows the pilot to pull off some impressive tricks without losing the correct orientation.

Dimensions and Weight

The Syma X5C is 12” square and it’s classified Trusted Source How to Register Your Drone Register your drone at FAA DroneZone either under part 107 or the Exception for Recreational Flyers. If you are not sure what kind of a drone flyer you are, check out our User Identification Tool or visit our Getting Started webpage to learn more. www.faa.gov as a portable mid-size drone. The X5C is probably too large to transport in a smaller backpack and that could be a major drawback for backpackers. But, the slightly oversized frame and larger propeller blades do make this drone more stable than similarly priced models. This is a key advantage for kids and new pilots that need more control as they learn. The lightweight construction makes this drone vulnerable to direct strikes and yet it can withstand the odd bump and falling during normal use.

Accessories and Gear

Syma has reasonable support for spare parts and replacements and this drone is less expensive to replace if it’s lost or damaged beyond repair. It’s easy to find a wide variety of spare batteries for this drone and carrying a few will extend the flying times. The prices for compatible batteries are competitive among aftermarket providers and it is possible to get good deals in bulk.

Price

The Syma X5C is an inexpensive drone and many people purchase a few spares to cover every eventuality. Adding a microSD card for camera storage, a few extra batteries and some spare propellers to cover damages is a smart move. All this can be had for under $60-$70 and although there are many alternatives at these prices, it’s still worth looking at the X5C. If you want a basic drone that’s fun to fly, this delivers a lot of bang for your buck.

PROS

CONS

  • This drone performs well in calm conditions if the trims are set correctly.
  • The simple control layout makes this an ideal first quadcopter for kids and new pilots.
  • The X5C is less likely to be damaged from a high altitude fall.
  • Protective guards are included in the package.
  • This quadcopter comes with four spare propeller blades.
  • The battery life is good for a drone at this price point.
  • The X5C camera is a 2 MP low resolution unit that provides very little detail.
  • Although the camera is an HD unit it only has 30 frames/sec with a 1280×720 pixel resolution and a data transfer rate of 1.5MBps. This makes the quality of video footage quite poor.
  • A lack of a GPS system makes an occasional drone locating trip inevitable.

 

Syma X5C vs X5C-1

The X5C-1 is an upgraded variant of the X5C we’ve reviewed here. It has an updated circuit board for better control and this makes it a good fit for more experienced pilots. If you want to fly outdoors regularly in a wider variety of weather conditions, the Syma X5C-1 would be a better choice than the X5C.

The X5C is an agile drone thanks to the “3D Eversion” system which allows the pilot to flip the drone in different directions. But, during these maneuvers, the camera on the X5C remains static. But, the X5C-1 camera will flip with the drone during these moves because the camera activation switch is on the throttle trim switch. This allows the pilot to get some crazy video footage during the fast turns.

The Syma X5C has demonstrated that the company can compete in a market outside toy quadcopters. The X5C-1 takes this to another level with more agile control and improved stability. Beginners and casual users may prefer the headless control and lighter feature set of the X5C instead.

Conclusion

Hopefully, this Syma X5C review has highlighted that this drone is a decent option. At this price point, it may have some downsides, such as a lower resolution camera, but it is a good choice for beginners or more experienced pilots who want a cheaper way to fly without the worry of costly replacement parts. With some parts included in the initial purchase and an impressive battery life, this drone is ready for your aerial adventures.

References

1.
• Global consumer drone shipments 2020-2030 | Statista
The total number of consumer drone shipments worldwide was around 5 million units in 2020. The number is expected to increase over the next decade, reaching 9.6 million consumer drone unit shipments globally by 2030.
2.
How to Register Your Drone
Register your drone at FAA DroneZone either under part 107 or the Exception for Recreational Flyers. If you are not sure what kind of a drone flyer you are, check out our User Identification Tool or visit our Getting Started webpage to learn more.
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